Progress Is Not Linear

Progress Is Not Linear by Charles Sledge

A question that I’m asked a lot is “When will X happen” X being the current goal that one is working towards. This question pops up in everything, from building a business, to getting in shape, to building a harem, and so many other things in life. We all loves numbers, we all want to have charts and definite dates for when things are going to happen, but the fact of the matter is that isn’t how reality works. Reality has it owns timing that has nothing to do with what we want.

That doesn’t mean hard work doesn’t pay off (though one must also work smart) it means that you can’t expect things to happen in the order that you want them too. Often all you can do is keep grinding while keeping your eyes open as you go. Maybe you won’t hit your goals by a certain date. But all the effort and work you put in is going to pay off just not usually in the time frame that you specify. That is why it’s important to focus on putting in the work and learning as you instead of getting caught up in having certain things by certain dates.

The “Overnight” Success

One prime example of this is the “overnight” success. I put overnight in quotes because as we all know there is no such thing as an “overnight” success. Success is something that takes lots of hard work and drugery and every successful person has gone through periods of doubt and wanting to give up before finally making it. They put in thankless and rewardless hours and days into whatever they eventually were successful at way before they were recognized for anything they did. “Overnight” success is the product of years of hard work, learning, adapting, and fighting. Regardless if it’s a rich entrepreneur, a famous actor, or just a guy living the life of his dreams. None of it happened instantly.

Our culture is obsessed with instant gratification and it plays directly in the worse parts of our nature. However anything worth having takes time to build. You have to learn to push away the end result and focus on the process. Not that the destination doesn’t count but there will be plenty of times when you’ll want to do anything other than what working at. Every pro bodybuilder has had a workout where he wanted to be anywhere but the gym, every famous writer had a time when he just wanted to toss his manuscript out the window and do anything but write.

All Work Counts

What you have to realize is that all the work that you are doing does count and has an impact, it’s just that the impact might not be seen for a long time, sometimes a very long time. If you’re looking for a quick reward success will always elude you. If you’re constantly measuring your Google analytics, your weight on the scale, or the zeroes in your bank account you’ll hamper your progress and maybe even convince yourself to give up. You need to focus on putting in the work first and foremost. Everything else stems from that. Put in the work and down the line the rewards come to you.

Focus on writing more content, on planning your next boring meal, on making that new deal. Don’t focus on the results. Then when the results do eventually come (and they do…eventually) you’ll enjoy them a whole lot more than if you obsessed over them. Also note that work compounds over time. I’ll use this blog as an example my sales of my books have increased more in the last two months than the entire year before that. Meaning I wrote hundreds of posts with little to show for it. Yet now the site grows more and more with me doing a whole lot less for a whole lot more. However it takes time to break through to that other side.


Progress is not linear. You’ll toil away putting in the work with nothing to show for when suddenly it’ll seem as if that gates of heaven opened up and heap reward upon reward on you. Of course you have to be careful not to let the payout make you weak or soft but rather use it to grow yourself and your assets more and more. The earlier you put the hard work in the better it’s going to pay out in the long run. Look at it as a cycle, each cycle you can choose to either put in the work and be at a higher level when the next cycle comes around or you can be lazy or dwindle what you have and end up at a lower level during the next cycle. It’s your choice.

If you have any questions you would like to see answered in a future post send them to me at charlessledge001 (at) gmail (dot) com. If you found value in this post then I would encourage you to share this site with someone who may need it as well as check out my books here. I appreciate it.

-Charles Sledge

Charles Sledge

  • Brendan

    Congrats on the profit surge, Charles. It’s been earned. I was around when you were dropping 3 posts a day. I was loving that mad persistence.

    Here’s to your continued success.